The Importance of Managing Work in Progress (WIP) in Scrum Projects


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Take a look at the results at the end of a sprint on a Scrum project. There are two scenarios. Both have the same user stories with the same story points for each:

  • User story 1: 13 story points
  • User story 2: 8 story points
  • User story 3: 3 story points
  • User story 4: 5 story points
  • User story 5: 1 story point
  • User story 6: 3 story points
  • User story 7: 1 story point

Scenario A

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Here are some details on A:

  • User story 1: 70 hours of work performed, 5 hours of work remaining
  • User story 2: 51 hours of work performed, no work remaining (and it meets the Definition of Done [DoD])
  • User story 3: 45 hours of work performed, 13 hours of work remaining
  • User story 4: 29 hours of work performed, no work remaining (and it meets the DoD)
  • User story 5: 3 hours of work performed, 2 hours of work remaining
  • User story 6: 30 hours of work performed, 17 hours of work remaining
  • User story 7: 4 hours of work performed, 1 hour of work remaining

A is summarized as:

  • 232 hours of work was performed, and 38 hours of work remains
  • 2 user stories were done, and 5 user stories were not completed

Scenario B

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Here are some details on B:

  • User story 1: 75 hours of work performed, no work remaining (and it meets the DoD)
  • User story 2: 51 hours of work performed, no work remaining (and it meets the DoD)
  • User story 3: 58 hours of work performed, no work remaining (and it meets the DoD)
  • User story 4: 29 hours of work performed, no work remaining (and it meets the DoD)
  • User story 5: 5 hours of work performed, no work remaining (and it meets the DoD)
  • User story 6: 14 hours of work performed, 33 hours of work remaining
  • User story 5: no work performed, and five hours of work remaining

B is summarized as:

  • 232 hours of work was performed, and 38 hours of work remains
  • 5 user stories were done, and 2 user stories were not completed

What Counts

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Scrum requires teams to build an increment of functionality during every sprint. Only work meeting the Definition of Done (DoD) is counted as complete, demonstrated at the sprint review meeting, and is potentially shippable.

There were two scenarios. Both had the same user stories with the same story points for each, and the same amount of work hours performed. Yet the outcomes were dramatically different. In A, 2 user stories were done--and are to be demonstrated at the sprint review meeting, and are potentially shippable. In B, 5 user stories were done--and are to be demonstrated at the sprint review meeting, and are potentially shippable. B is the better scenario.

A possible explanation for the differences between the two situations is that the Scrum team in B may have done a better job of limiting Work in Progress.

To learn more about agile/Scrum, check out the award-winning book, Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions. You're invited to visit the digital press kit, watch the trailer, and pick up a copy of the publication. It’s offered in digital and print formats.

The ebook (ASIN: B01FZ0JIIY) is available in:


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Are Agile and Scrum Limited to Technology Projects or Technology Industries?


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Shifting customer needs are common in today's marketplace. Businesses must be adaptive and responsive to change while delivering an exceptional customer experience to be competitive. Traditional development and delivery frameworks are often ineffective. In contrast, Scrum is a value-driven agile approach which incorporates adjustments based on regular and repeated customer and stakeholder feedback. And Scrum's built-in rapid response to change leads to substantial benefits such as fast time-to-market, higher satisfaction, and continuous improvement—which supports innovation and drives competitive advantage.

Agile and Scrum were once the sole domain of software development. However, the benefits and results have not gone unnoticed by others. Practices are being adopted by additional departments and industries. Examples follow.

  • The State of Scrum Report(1) revealed that 21% of Scrum projects are run by departments outside of Technology such as Marketing, Finance, and Sales.
  • An article published in The New York Times(2) noted agile's use in diverse industries—with examples ranging from a museum in Sydney, Australia, to an automobile dealership in Maine.
  • A business brief(3) illustrated how varied businesses—including John Deere, NPR, and Mission Bell Winery—employed agile.

In summary, agile and Scrum are used broadly. For more information on agile/Scrum, pick up a copy of the award-winning book,
Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions. For more information on the publication, and to connect:


References:

(1) Scrum Alliance (2017). The State of Scrum Report. Westminster, CO: Scrum Alliance, Inc.
(2) Hardy, Q. (2016, November 25). "The New Workplace is Agile, and Nonstop. Can You Keep Up?" The New York Times, page B1.
(3) Rigby, D. K., Berez, S., Caimi, G., and Noble, A. (2016).
Bain Brief: Agile Innovation. Boston, MA: Bain & Company.


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Produce Planning Cards™ — A Relative Estimation Tool and Technique for Agile Teams


Scott M. Graffius is the Founder and CEO of Exceptional PPM and PMO Solutions™, and the author of
Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions. This post shares news related to the business and the book.

Exceptional PPM and PMO Solutions™ introduced Produce Planning Cards™ to help agile teams estimate work. An overview of the tool and the technique is provided in a video presented by Agile Scrum and Exceptional PPM and PMO Solutions™. It's available at https://vimeo.com/261680776, and it can be played below.

Produce Planning Cards™ Help Agile Teams Estimate Work from Scott Graffius on Vimeo.


For more information on the Produce Planning Cards™, visit
http://exceptional-pmo.com/Produce-Planning-Cards.


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Potentially Shippable Product Increment and Minimum Viable Product Approach

Potentially Shippable Product Increment

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Scrum requires teams to build an increment of functionality during every sprint, and the increment must be potentially shippable because the Product Owner might decide to release it at the end of the sprint.

  • The product increment is the sum of all backlog items completed during the current sprint
  • Potentially shippable is defined by a state of confidence or readiness
  • Shipping is a business decision: shipping may or may not occur at the end of the sprint (new functionality may be accumulated via multiple sprints before being shipped)

Minimum Viable Product Approach

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The product increment may or may not be marketable. However, a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) approach is sometimes used to help test marketable ideas. MVP is a product release strategy which can be used in Scrum (or another framework). The term was created by Frank Robinson, and popularized by Steve Blank and Eric Ries.

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Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions (http://bit.ly/scrumone) says:

"The MVP has just those features considered sufficient for it to be of value to customers, and allow for it to be shipped or sold to early adopters. Customer feedback will inform future development of the product."

Here are a few examples of then-startups use of an MVP:

  • Facebook: The first product (originally called Thefacebook) tested traction of students connecting with their college/class and posting messages. Other features—built on the initial success—came later.
  • Groupon: It launched with a WordPress site and PDFs emailed to early subscribers. The test proved successful, and the company subsequently built its voucher system and backend.
  • Spotify: The initial product was simple desktop app, tested in a closed beta. The MVP proved to be of interest to consumers, and more features followed.


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Product Backlog Ordering Technique: Factoring Business Value and Risk

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Scrum is the most popular agile project development and delivery framework. In Scrum, the product release backlog (sometimes referred to as the product backlog) is a list of features, user stories, bugs to be fixed, and/or other requirements. The Product Owner is the ultimate holder of the backlog. The Product Owner prioritizes items, and different methods can be employed to help accomplish that work. This brief article focuses on the technique of factoring business value and risk.

Each item in the product release backlog would be rated as either high or low in two dimensions: business value and risk. It is suggested that high business value, high-risk items are worked on first. While that may seem counterintuitive, the earlier this work is done, the sooner the team will move to mitigate the issues and unknowns—leading to a higher quality product. If there's a failure, it will occur early and relatively inexpensively.

An ordering of priorities is illustrated above, and it follows:

1. High business value, high risk.
2. High business value, low risk.
3. Low business value, low risk.
4. Low business value, high risk.

Alternatively, other prioritization methods—such as the MoSCoW ranking model— may be used. MoSCoW will be highlighted in a subsequent article.

This content is an abridged excerpt from the award-winning book,
Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions, available in paperback and ebook formats.

The ebook (ASIN: B01FZ0JIIY) is available in:


The
paperback (ISBN-13: 9781533370242) is for sale at:



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Scott M. Graffius Featured in Success Story by BEA


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The Book Excellence Awards features Scott M. Graffius, author of Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions, in a story. The article highlights factors contributing to the book's success — including credit to Chris Hare and Colin Giffen, the technical editors on the publication. You can check out the story at https://www.bookexcellenceawards.com/scott-graffius-success-story.


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"Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions" Featured in Presentation at DX Summit

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I’m pleased to have had content from
Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions (bit.ly/scrumone) featured by Eeshita Grover, Senior Manager at Cisco, in her presentation at DX Summit. The conference serves customer experience and digital marketing leaders tackling voice of the customer, machine learning and AI, big data and analytics, optimization, and digital experience challenges.

Eeshita Grover’s talk was on November 14, 2018 and her presentation (
https://www.slideshare.net/DXSummit/building-a-uex-strategy-for-inproduct-selfhelp-eeshita-grover) included 14 slides. Slide 13 featured content from the book:

“If you don’t collect any metrics, you’re flying blind. If you collect and focus on too many, they may be obstructing your field of view.”

— Scott M. Graffius,
Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions

About Author Scott M. Graffius

Scott M. Graffius, CSP, CSM, CSPO, PMP, ITIL, LSSGB is a project management expert, consultant, international speaker, and award-winning author. He is the CEO of Exceptional PPM and PMO Solutions, a professional services firm, where he partners with client companies to help them achieve their strategic objectives and business initiatives through project management leadership. The consultancy provides project, program, portfolio, and PMO management services inclusive of agile, traditional, and hybrid development and delivery frameworks. Business results include upgraded responsiveness to business needs, faster delivery and time-to-market, improved on-budget performance, higher customer and stakeholder satisfaction, and greater competitive advantage. Scott is a former vice president of project management with a publicly traded provider of diverse consumer products and services over the Internet. Before that, he ran and supervised the delivery of projects and programs in public and private organizations with businesses ranging from e-commerce to advanced technology products and services, retail, manufacturing, entertainment, and more. He has experience with consumer, business, reseller, government, and international markets. Additional information is available at http://Exceptional-PMO.com/who_we_are/bio.

About Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions



A fantastic agile transformation experience and result with a client organization in the entertainment industry was the inspiration for Scott’s book,
Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions. It helps technical and non-technical teams develop and deliver products at astounding speed with rapid adaptation to change and continuous improvement—which supports innovation and drives competitive advantage. The book has garnered 17 first place awards. Scott and his publication have been featured in Yahoo Finance, the Boston Herald, NBC WRAL, the Dallas Business Journal, the PM World Journal, BookLife by Publisher’s Weekly, Innovation Management, and additional media outlets. A trailer, high-resolution images, reviews, a detailed list of awards and more are available at https://AgileScrumGuide.com. Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions is offered in digital and print formats.

The ebook (ASIN: B01FZ0JIIY) is available in:


The
paperback (ISBN-13: 9781533370242) is for sale at:



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Content from "Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions" Featured in Article from Learning Solutions

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Content from Scott M. Graffius'
Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions appeared in Three Reasons That eLearning Fails—and How to Fix Them, published in Learning Solutions. Here's an excerpt from the article by Dan Belhassen:

"Process improvement experts from Peter Drucker ("What's measured improves") to Scott M. Graffius ("If you don't collect any metrics, you're flying blind") agree that measuring key metrics, and focusing on improving them, is critical to actually achieving desired results."

The article is available online here:
https://www.learningsolutionsmag.com/articles/3-reasons-that-elearning-fails-and-how-to-fix-them/.

About Author Scott M. Graffius


Scott M. Graffius, CSP, CSM, CSPO, PMP, ITIL, LSSGB is a project management expert, consultant, international speaker, and award-winning author. He is the CEO of Exceptional PPM and PMO Solutions, a professional services firm, where he partners with client companies to help them achieve their strategic objectives and business initiatives through project management leadership. The consultancy provides project, program, portfolio, and PMO management services inclusive of agile, traditional, and hybrid development and delivery frameworks. Business results include upgraded responsiveness to business needs, faster delivery and time-to-market, improved on-budget performance, higher customer and stakeholder satisfaction, and greater competitive advantage. Scott is a former vice president of project management with a publicly traded provider of diverse consumer products and services over the Internet. Before that, he ran and supervised the delivery of projects and programs in public and private organizations with businesses ranging from e-commerce to advanced technology products and services, retail, manufacturing, entertainment, and more. He has experience with consumer, business, reseller, government, and international markets. Additional information is available at http://Exceptional-PMO.com/who_we_are/bio.

About Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions


A fantastic agile transformation experience and result with a client organization in the entertainment industry was the inspiration for Scott’s book,
Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions. It helps technical and non-technical teams develop and deliver products at astounding speed with rapid adaptation to change and continuous improvement—which supports innovation and drives competitive advantage. The book has garnered 17 first place awards. Scott and his publication have been featured in Yahoo Finance, the Boston Herald, NBC WRAL, the Dallas Business Journal, the PM World Journal, BookLife by Publisher’s Weekly, Innovation Management, and additional media outlets. A trailer, high-resolution images, reviews, a detailed list of awards and more are available at https://AgileScrumGuide.com. Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions is offered in digital and print formats.

The ebook (ASIN: B01FZ0JIIY) is available in:


The
paperback (ISBN-13: 9781533370242) is for sale at:



★★★★★


You're invited to find out more about Scott:


And connect with Scott on social:






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Content from Scott M. Graffius Featured in Story Published by Computer Weekly

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I'm honored to be quoted in a piece by Tech journalist Adrian Bridgwater, published by Computer Weekly. Here's an excerpt from the story:

“As the Agile author Scott M. Graffius put it: ‘If you don’t collect any metrics, you’re flying blind. If you collect and focus on too many, they may be obstructing your field of view.’”

I share the credit with
Chris Hare and Colin Giffen, the technical editors on Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions. The quote is from the book. For additional information on Agile Scrum, please see the digital media kit.

You can read the story (Bridgwater, Adrian. “Plandek Co-CEO: 5 Areas for Agile Team Self-Improvement.” ComputerWeekly.com, April 30, 2019) here:
https://www.computerweekly.com/blog/CW-Developer-Network/Plandek-co-CEO-5-areas-for-Agile-team-self-improvement

Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions is offered in digital and print formats.

The ebook (ASIN: B01FZ0JIIY) is available in:


The
paperback (ISBN-13: 9781533370242) is for sale at:



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BookAuthority Names "Agile Transformation" One of the Best Scrum Ebooks of All Time

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Agile Transformation: A Brief Story of How an Entertainment Company Developed New Capabilities and Unlocked Business Agility to Thrive in an Era of Rapid Change was initially offered only in ebook format. Soon after it was released, BookAuthority named Agile Transformation as one of the best *new* ebooks on Scrum! BookAuthority gave it an additional award. It's now on the list of the best Scrum ebooks of *all time.* Details on the award are available here. Thank you BookAuthority!

For those who prefer the visual and tactile experience of physical books, a paperback version of
Agile Transformation was added and is also available.

Grab a copy of
Agile Transformation in ebook or paperback -
● In the United States:
bit.ly/at-us
● Outside the United States:
bit.ly/intl-links

#Agile #AgileProjectManagement #AgileTransformation #AgileTransformationBook #AgileCoach #Author #Book #Business #Change #ChangeManagement #Entertainment #IT #ITManagement #InformationTechnology #Innovation #Leadership #Management #PMO #Product #ProjectManagement #ProjectMgmt #Scrum #Success #Tech #Technology #Transformation

About Agile Transformation


Thriving in today's marketplace frequently depends on making a transformation to become more agile. Those successful in the transition enjoy faster delivery speed and ROI, higher satisfaction, continuous improvement, and additional benefits. Based on actual events, Agile Transformation: A Brief Story of How an Entertainment Company Developed New Capabilities and Unlocked Business Agility to Thrive in an Era of Rapid Change provides a revealing behind-the-scenes account of a successful agile implementation at a global entertainment company.

Scott M. Graffius' first book,
Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions, provides readers with practical information they can use to get benefits from the most popular agile framework, Scrum. It presents top practices from successful implementations based on Scott's hands-on experience and 116 diverse sources such as the Scrum Alliance, the Project Management Institute, MIT, the IEEE, Gartner, and the Software Engineering Institute. The publication garnered 17 first place awards from national and international competitions. Scott and his book have been featured in Yahoo Finance, Computer Weekly, the PM World Journal, Learning Solutions, Innovation Management, and additional media publications.

In
Agile Transformation: A Brief Story of How an Entertainment Company Developed New Capabilities and Unlocked Business Agility to Thrive in an Era of Rapid Change, Scott shares a behind-the-scenes account of a successful agile implementation at a global entertainment company. The story is based on actual events and it's told from Scott's perspective as an agile coach. The transformation dramatically improved the way the organization works and delivers business value. New capabilities and practices enabled the enterprise to adapt to its changing environment, move faster, and drive innovation, which made it more competitive and prosperous.

Agile Transformation: A Brief Story of How an Entertainment Company Developed New Capabilities and Unlocked Business Agility to Thrive in an Era of Rapid Change by Scott M. Graffius is offered in digital and print formats.

Agile Transformation in ebook format (ASIN: B07R9LJLPJ) is available in:


Agile Transformation in paperback (ISBN-13: 9781072447962) is for sale in:


About Author Scott M. Graffius

Scott M Graffius - mini bio LR

Scott M. Graffius, CSP-SM, CSP-PO, CSM, CSPO, PMP, ITIL, LSSGB is a project management expert, consultant, speaker, and author. He is a Principal Consultant and the CEO of Exceptional PPM and PMO Solutions, a professional services firm, where he helps clients strengthen their project management capabilities and realize their strategic objectives and business initiatives. Before that, he ran and supervised the delivery of projects and programs in public and private companies with businesses ranging from e-commerce to advanced technology, manufacturing, entertainment, and more. Scott and his award-winning book on agile project management, Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions, have been featured in Yahoo Finance, the Boston Herald, Learning Solutions, Informa, Innovation Management, and additional media publications. His second title, Agile Transformation: A Brief Story of How an Entertainment Company Developed New Capabilities and Unlocked Business Agility to Thrive in an Era of Rapid Change, was published in April 2019. BookAuthority named it one of the best new books on Scrum. Scott regularly speaks at conferences and other events around the world. Additional information is available in his bio.

About BookAuthority

BookAuthority curates the books recommended by the world's most successful CEOs, business leaders, and domain experts such as Elon Musk, Warren Buffett, Sheryl Sandberg, and David Allen. Only the very best books are featured on BookAuthority. To keep BookAuthority's site objective and unbiased, ratings are calculated purely based on data. BookAuthority uses a proprietary technology to identify and rate the best nonfiction books, using dozens of different signals, including public mentions, recommendations, ratings, sentiment, popularity and sales history. BookAuthority does not accept requests to feature books, nor does BookAuthority conduct business with publishers or authors.
BookAuthority has been featured on CNNForbes and Inc. The preceding information is based on content from BookAuthority.org.


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